Traffic woes for some Richmond Hill residents may soon be quelled thanks to efforts from city and county officials.
At the Richmond Hill City Council regular meeting Tuesday, Mayor Harold Fowler said recent meetings with Georgia Department of Transportation Commissioner Keith Golden led to some increases in funding for traffic lights and improvement projects in the city.
Fowler said he, along with Bryan County Commission Chairman Jimmy Burnsed, Commissioner Carter Infinger and County Administrator Phil Jones, met with Golden in Atlanta about the resurfacing of Timber Trail Road and installing traffic lights at Highway 144 and Timber Trail and at Highway 17 and Mulberry Drive.
He said discussions of the Timber Trail resurfacing project originally came up about two years ago and the DOT promised $45,000 towards the project, but it never progressed. He said DOT has still agreed to commit that and more to the project.
“In that meeting, they agreed they would still give us $45,000, and they had a couple of contracts come in lower than they had estimated. So they have kicked in an additional $40,000,” Fowler said.
He said county officials also explained to Golden that once Harris Trail Road is paved and the widening of Highway 144 begins, Timber Trail would be impacted. This led DOT to provide assistance with the installation of that traffic light.
“They will furnish a traffic light and maybe some other paraphernalia, but the rest of the cost of installing that light would be shared equally by the city and county if council so agrees and county commissioners agree,” Fowler said.
The traffic light at the intersection of Highway 17 and Mulberry Drive was also addressed during the meeting with Golden, Fowler said.
“I thought the city would get about $50,000 next year, and they’d already told us we could use that towards applying to that light,” Fowler said. “But the commissioner (Golden) told me that we were going to get $100,000.”
With the funds from the DOT and the $25,000 committed from TRC-Richmond Hill, who has proposed a Family Dollar store at that intersection, the cost of the light should be covered, he said.
“There is a good chance that by the end of this year we should have traffic lights at Mulberry, Timber Trail and the resurfacing done,” he said. “So it was a very great meeting we had.”
Read more in the May 19 edition of the News.